By: AJE Recruiting Specialist
Working hard or hardly working? Contrary to popular belief, more hours does not equal more success. If you are working a 10 or 12–hour work day, you may end the day exhausted, irritated, and lacking the energy to pursue personal interests. However, it’s not difficult to consider that due to today’s reduced staffing, you may be required to produce vast amounts of work with limited staffing. This should not discourage you. You can still work smart by doing less and meet the demands of your boss. Here are some strategies you may want to consider to revitalize yourself – and still get more done in the New Year.
Give yourself frequent breaks while at work. Simply sitting behind your desk for a long period of time does not translate into getting more work done. If you’re exhausted from the first half of your day and feel that you’re only operating at half of your normal capacity, you will even be less productive per hour than you would be otherwise.
Organize your day into small groups of tasks that you can accomplish in a reasonable amount of time, say 90 or 120 minutes. After you’ve finished each group, reward and revitalize yourself with a quick break before you get started on the next.
No more working through your lunch break. Every little bit of time you can get away from your work counts towards relieving your exhaustion and stress. No more eating at your desk. Spend your lunch hour outdoors or maybe in a nearby restaurant; take a walk if you like. If you’re really exhausted, find a spot where you can sit comfortably for a few minutes and take a nap before heading back in to tackle the next group of tasks.
Give yourself at least 24 consecutive hours away from work and anything work–related. This includes not checking your work email (turn off the Smartphone), not taking business calls, not trying to squeeze in "a few hours" of work over the weekend when you should be recharging, and, as hard as it may seem, not even thinking about your job. If a 15–minute walk can refresh you and reduce your stress levels, image how much an entire day can help. Work–life balance should not be considered a cliché but a necessity.
Remember: we as human beings are not machines. It’s not possible for us to work hour after hour with no loss of focus and productivity, not to mention a dangerous buildup of stress and fatigue. The most difficult part of removing yourself from work is finding the motivation to do so in the first place; once you see how helpful it is, you’ll wonder how you ever got by without it.
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